Israel and Italy on Monday recognized another significant step in the realization of an agreement the two countries signed in 2012, with the delivery of the first of two aircraft armed with Conformal Airborne Early Warning & Control Systems (CAEW) to Italy. The ceremony, at Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), was attended by the Italian ambassador, and officials from the Ministry of Defense’s Directorate of Defense Research and Development (DDR&D) and from the Italian Air Force.
The CAEW, developed by ELTA systems, a subsidiary of IAI, was installed on a G-550 Gulfstream. The second aircraft included in the agreement is expected to be delivered to the Italian Air Force in 2017.
The G550 CAEW is a unique CAEW solution built on radar installed on the sides of the aircraft. The CAEW provides aerial and maritime situational awareness with 360-degree surveillance of airborne targets at all altitudes, over any terrain and in any weather conditions, including maritime surveillance and electronic surveillance. It can operate at long ranges with extended flight time. The CAEW primary objective is to provide intelligence to maintain air superiority and conduct surveillance. The system is currently in-service in Israel, Singapore, and Italy, to be followed by the United States.
DDR&D Director, Brig. Gen. (res) Dr. Daniel Gold said at the ceremony: “The system reflects the deep, fruitful collaboration between the Italian and Israeli ministries of defense. It’s both sides’ understanding of the needs and challenges that stand before the other. In the framework of this agreement, one of the products of which we see here before us, the Italian government signed a reciprocal procurement agreement with the Israeli defense industries at a volume of more than $1.04 billion. This is a continuation of the procurement of 30 training aircraft for the [Israeli] Air Force, made in Italy. The cooperation is very substantial and significant to the Israeli industry, and allows for the development of advanced technologies to be used first and foremost by the IDF, and provides two warning aircraft with the worlds most advanced abilities.”
IAI President & CEO Joseph Weiss said: “As part of the strengthening of our close relations with Italy and European industry, we are pleased to hand over the CAEW, one of IAI’s most advanced systems, representing the next generation in Mission Aircraft, to the Italian Ministry of Defense. We are proud that the joint development program between IAI, Italian industry, and the Italian Ministry of Defense, has been highly successful and met the challenging schedule. We look forward to continuing this model of international cooperation with additional countries and customers.”JNi.Media